The point of PINs and passwords is to protect your device or account being accessed by someone else. You might think that putting a PIN on your phone is a great way to prevent hackers or someone else from getting into your phone, but as it turns out your phone might have already given you away.

According to security researchers at the Newcastle University (via Engadget), they have found that the motion sensors built into your phone can apparently give away your PINs and passwords. How, you ask? Basically through its movements as you type away at the virtual keyboard while you enter the information.

Apparently these motions create some pretty distinct patterns that have been proven to be relatively accurate. Based on the tests conducted by the researchers, they managed to crack 4-digit PINs with an accuracy of 70% on the first guess, and 100% accuracy on the fifth guess, which is actually alarmingly scary.

Of course this means that hackers would need access to the data recorded by your phone’s motion sensors, which would most likely require some kind of exploit on your phone to be taken advantage of. Thankfully companies like Apple and Firefox have patched their software so that sensor data cannot be collected, while Google is said to be aware of the issue and are looking into a fix.

Filed in Cellphones. Read more about Security.

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